Food Grows in Trucks

Wikipedia, the source of all reliable information, defines a food truck as:

A food truck, mobile kitchen, mobile canteen, roach coach, or catering truck 
is a mobile venue that transports and sells food. Some, including ice cream trucks, 
sell mostly frozen or prepackaged food; others are more like restaurants-on-wheels. 
Some may cater to specific meals, such as the breakfast truck, lunch truck or lunch wagon, 
and snack truck, break truck or taco truck.

Food trucks are all the rage these days in Minneapolis. You can see my first venture into food trucking here. To celebrate mobile food, Uptown hosted the second annual Minneapolis Food Truck Fair a couple weekends ago. I did not attend the original food truck fair, but from what I gather on the internet, it did not go well. There was an entrance fee, lines were monstrously long, etc, etc.

This year’s fair was held in Uptown instead of downtown (where the first one was located), there was no entrance fee, and the lines were still monstrously long.

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I can’t compare the lines to last year, but I waited about 30-40 minutes. Admittedly, I don’t think there’s much that could have been done to speed the process if people wanted their food fresh, but if you hate standing in line this probably would not be a good event for you. It also didn’t help that there is an unwritten agreement between Minneapolis and myself that whenever there is an outdoor festival that I attend the weather will be boiling hot. Thanks, MPLS, I ❤ U. 🙂

My first stop was at The Anchor Fish & Chips truck.

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While waiting in line, I watched the kid next to me chomp on a hunk of meat:

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I ordered the classic. Fish. And Chips.

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yummm.

My friends had a slightly shorter wait at Holy Arepa. They got – you guessed it – arepas:

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A chicken pot pie pasty from Potter’s Pasties was also enjoyed:

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Overall, the Food Truck Fair was a lot of fun and a neat opportunity to get a better idea about what the food truck scene offers. If I could plan the event though, I would have the trucks offer sampling sizes of their most popular dishes. With all of the option, it would have been fun to get to do more sampling. But with such big portions it’s not realistic to get more than a couple things.

If this happens next summer though, I will definitely be there!

Muddy Waters and Food Trucks

This week I had two new food experiences.

The first new food experience was going to Muddy Waters for lunch. Muddy Waters is a bar/eatery/coffee shop in Uptown on Lyndale between Lake and Lagoon. I’ve been interested by the establishment for a long time, and I finally made plans to get food there. The atmosphere is pretty unique since it does seem to truly be a coffee shop, bar, and restaurant all rolled into one.

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When you walk in the door, to your right is a full bar and to the left is a full barista bar. The restaurant (and patio, when it’s nice outside) are full of patrons enjoying booze, coffee, or some variety of good eats. For my lunch rendezvous, we stuck with food and coffee. I ordered a malted mocha (something I’ve never seen on a menu before!) and the black bean hummus plate:

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The hummus plate came with carrots, zuchinni, parsley, jalapenos, queso fresco, and grilled bread. The hummus was amazing. I could have eaten it with a spoon. In fact, that’s exactly what I did once I ate all of the veggies/bread. My lunch date ordered a made-t0-order pizza with ricotta cheese and spinach:

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It received high reviews. Although their menu in not that extensive, all of the food was great (and the dishes we saw being brought to other tables looked equally appetizing). I would say this is a fun spot for a favorite dish, but if you’re looking for a wide selection or large plates, then you would be better off going elsewhere. If you’re a coffee fan though, it’s worth noting that the coffee bar was a walk-up counter and several customers cam and got to-go drinks. Their coffee menu had some unusual choices. Besides the aforementioned malted mocha there was also a white mocha, thai coffee, cubano, and all the regular espresso favorites.

The second new food experience I had this week involved food trucks. Since it was the weekend, the workweek line-up of trucks downtown wasn’t an option, so we sought out a different location. We discovered that a few food trucks were gathered by Fulton Brewery.

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The brewery seems to have a relationship with the food trucks, and beer-seeking visitors can bring their food inside to the bar. The food truck options were:

  • Lulu’s Street Food: serving tacos and fries
  • Cafe Racer: serving Latin American food
  • MidNordEmpanadaTruck: serving, you guessed it, empanadas

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Our primary business went to Cafe Racer. Noah got the Colombian hot dogs and I ordered the pulled chicken plate with carrot souffle and moduro (fried plantains):

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We also shared an order of chicken empanadas from MidNord:

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I loved my pulled chicken and Latin American side dishes. The empinadas were also very tasty (and came with a delicious lime sauce), but the fried exterior was a little much for me. Since an ill-timed bout of pouring rain began right when we got our food, we enjoyed our lunches inside the walls of the brewery.

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The brewery offers tours every Saturday at 1, 2, and 3pm. Although we didn’t join a tour group this time around, we speculated that it could be a fun activity in the future. The brewery was especially full of Twins fans who were watching the game on TV (and possibly heading to the stadium later).

My first food truck experience definitely piqued my interest, and I would like to head downtown for lunch during the workweek to check out a more extensive selection of food trucks. If you’re interested in the Minneapolis Food Truck scene, make sure to check out Reviews on Wheels, another WordPress blog devoted to exactly that topic!